CEC Theses and Dissertations

Title

A Local Area Network Implemented At Everett High School

Date of Award

1989

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Science

Department

Center for Computer-Based Learning

Advisor

John A. Scigliano

Committee Member

Marlyn Kemper Littman

Committee Member

Thomas MacFarland

Committee Member

Jacques Levin

Committee Member

Mientje Levin

Abstract

The loss of library materials as well as of her departmental school materials has been a growing problem at Everett High School for the past several years. In recent years school budget cuts combined with a more mobile and transient student population has increased the awareness of the need for keeping better material accountability through efficient, accurate student obligation records. Decreased budgets, increased student loss of materials, and increased cost of replacement for those materials have focused administration attention on the need for an improved student obligation tracking system.

Everett High School covers a four block campus site located in the central area of the city of Everett, Washington, a community of approximately 60,000 citizens. In recent year’s school budget cuts and a more mobile, transient student population has caused this problem to take a higher priority in administration plans and goals.

Under the old system when a student withdrew, communication regarding return or replacement of materials broke down among departments. Often times students were expected to hand deliver their own obligation records for appropriate signatures before withdrawing. Under this system Obligation records were inaccurate, incomplete or lost. In several cases, students withdrew and their records transferred before an accurate accounting of their student obligations were recorded. Consequently, existing information that needed to be shared among various staff members was not properly processed in an accurate and timely manner resulting in: A. Library materials not returned.
B. Textbooks not returned to teachers.
c. Extracurricular equipment not returned (E .g. costumes for drama department).
D. Fines for the above materials not collected.

Working in cooperation with Everett High administrators and staff, the investigator constructed a timeline of procedures and methods to install an information sharing system that would significantly reduce student materials loss. It was determined that this developmental project would cover a four year period from September, 1987, through June, 1991. From September, 1989, through June, 1991, the system would be fully functioning with constant monitoring and evaluation consistent with established goals and expectations.

Because accurate statistics could not be collected for unreturned materials from all Everett High departments, the investigator focused the statistical research on library materials unreturned or unreimbursed by withdrawn students for the period 1987-89, prior to installation of a LAN system. These figures provide the baseline data for the study. The LAN will be operational and the E.H.S. staff trained in its use by August, 1989. The LAN system will be fully functional from 1989-1991 and pertinent library data will be kept for this two year period for purposes of comparison with baseline data.

Upon evaluating the various constraints placed on the investigator by administrators regarding time, finances, staff and hardware, the investigator chose to combine hardware already in place at Everett High School with other compatible hardware to establish a new communication system. It was necessary to purchase additional Macintosh microcomputers, Apple printers and one laser printer.

Each microcomputer workstation was connected to the VAX through a twisted pair of telephone wires. This forced a star configuration with the VAX as the central server. The result was a local area network (LAN) in place at Everett High School.

The benefits to the Everett School District of using a LAN communication system will not be known until the project terminates in June, 1991. If the LAN system is found to be financially beneficial at Everett High the system could be expanded to include other schools in the district as well as the central office.

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